Issues

Len Is Your Friend

Chesapeake is a great place to live, but we can do better. I truly believe our local government should be focused on uplifting the quality of life for everyone in our great city. When we come together and leave politics at the door, just imagine what we can accomplish. As our mayor, I will value voices from every corner of our community because our government is here to serve you, not the other way around.

We can do better. We must do better. We must do better by making life as easy as possible on our seniors while protecting families from taxes and fees wherever possible. We must do better by investing more into our neighborhood schools and underserved communities; recognizing parents as our valued partners in education. We must do better when it comes to relieving traffic congestion while planning our city’s growth so that we can preserve rural areas as well.

It will take a strong partnership between our citizens and elected officials to shift the culture of our city government for the better. We can do it, Chesapeake! This is my promise and commitment to you. Please join me. We have work to do!

Len is your friend when it comes to these seven critical issues facing our great city:

Seniors

Chesapeake Seniors are amazing! That is why we have to do everything within our power to protect their health and their homes. So many seniors are income restricted these days and that is why it is so important that we maintain our real estate tax exemptions for senior homeowners. We also need to make sure our seniors have every opportunity to take advantage of our city’s parks and recreation facilities to maintain their social circles as well as their health. Len’s parents are Chesapeake boomers and so he wants to make sure Chesapeake remains a city that our seniors love to call their home.

Schools

We may have one of the better school systems in Hampton Roads, but we are not the best and frankly, we can do better for the students and parents of Chesapeake. Len believes Chesapeake cannot afford to have anything less than the best school system in the Commonwealth. When our school system produces well-educated graduates equipped for a 21st century economy, then high-paying employers will beat a path to Chesapeake to hire our young people!

Many of our schools are over capacity and our city has an urgent need to expand or construct new schools. Far too many students have go to school in trailers and functionally obsolete buildings. Len is committed to improving our school facilities and more. We also need to upgrade class technology because a 21st century education requires 21st century equipment. Our students deserve nothing less.

Our teachers and staff should also be paid in a way that reflects the prosperity of our city. We cannot afford to lose our good teachers to surrounding cities and we must become even more attractive to well-qualified educators and administrators. The staff and faculty are the soul of our school system and we must endeavor to maintain their morale at a high level.

Roads

Roads have long been choke points in our city. While we have made tremendous progress when it comes to roads, there is still much to be done. That is why projects such as the Deep Bridge Replacement Project must be funded as soon as possible. Road capacity is a vital part of the overall quality of life and Len wants to reduce congestion wherever possible in our city.

Rural Chesapeake

Len appreciates the dual rural-suburban nature of our amazing city and understands why preserving rural Chesapeake is so important. Whether its canoeing in Northwest River Park, biking down the Dismal Swamp Canal Trail, or pony rides at Hickory Ridge Park, Len and his kids absolutely enjoy rural Chesapeake. The people of rural Chesapeake chose this scenic section of the city to call home for obvious reasons and Len is committed to preserving this beautiful way of life.

Development

Len believes redevelopment is the key to our growth, not spiraling hap-hazard development that erases more and more of rural Chesapeake. Sprawl is essentially lazy development. There is really no such thing as “smart development” unless Chesapeake makes it a priority to redevelop economically challenged areas like Indian River, South Norfolk as well as our city’s once thriving malls.

Sufficient public infrastructure already exists in these areas and it simply makes more sense to reinvest in these communities, rather than building out new sub-divisions that strain our schools and roads. Finding ways to redevelop areas challenged by economic stagnation may prove to be more challenging, but that is why Len is running for mayor: to implement solutions to fix the big problems facing our city.

Safety

Chesapeake has one of the finest police forces in the country, but it is suffering from the same challenges that affect law enforcement nationwide: maintaining a sufficient number of officers. Our fire service has the same problem. With baby-boomers beginning to retire in record numbers and the lack of young people interested in becoming career first-responders, this growing deficit of personnel has already begun to critically impact how these departments operate. This is an urgent need and one that can be addressed through forward-thinking leadership. Len is committed to maintaining our ranks of first responders to ensure the safety of our great city.

Growth

The simple fact is our city needs more money to meet the pressing needs of our city. Revenue should be raised through increasing economic growth, not raising taxes. No one knew better how to drive economic growth in Chesapeake than our longest serving mayor, Dr. Bill Ward, who truly understood that Chesapeake is in competition for jobs globally, not just locally. Through his efforts and others, Chesapeake now boasts long-standing multi-million dollar investments from the likes of Sumitomo, Mitsubishi, and YUPO. The time has come to re-introduce Chesapeake to the world and let them know we are open for business. Len is also committed to the cultivation of the small business community of Chesapeake as well because he understands that any business, no matter the size creates the jobs that power our city’s economy. It must be through smart growth, that we finance the increasing cost of our city’s priorities.